November 11th, 1918 World War I Armistice Letter
Well, this is a ceasefire from World War I. It belonged to our father. And I believe-- I wasn't really listening, like I should have.
But I do believe that it came from a very dear friend of his, of ours, who was our babysitter, also, but she was elderly, early on.
Or she seemed like that to us when she was babysitting.
Well, it's a note dated November 11, 1918, the day that the armistice was signed to stop hostilities. At 9:10 a.m., an hour and 50 minutes before actual cessation of hostilities. And this basically is stating that, "You are to hold your positions, "you're not to move back at all, "you're to stay exactly where you are, and to send a sketch of your positions to us." Because 11:00 was when the hostilities would stop, but that was not the end of the war. This was the beginning of the end of the war, but then the politicians took over to work out how it was actually going to end. So if the Germans kept fighting after 11:00, they could not move back. They had to stay exactly where they were. So have you ever had it appraised before?
Okay, well, we talked about it at the table for a little while. And we all loved it. It's... these notes would have been given to all company commanders by their superior officers to tell them what to do when, when they were supposed to stop fighting. So there were a lot of these out there, but they don't survive today. Given the content and the date that this was written, we would put an auction estimate, conservatively, of $800 to $1,200, and could do better at auction, given the content and his service.
Oh, I see.
Executive producer Marsha Bemko shares her tips for getting the most out of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW.
Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."
Note the date: Take note of the date the appraisal was recorded. This information appears in the upper left corner of the page, with the label "Appraised On." Values change over time according to market forces, so the current value of the item could be higher, lower, or the same as when our expert first appraised it.
Context is key: Listen carefully. Most of our experts will give appraisal values in context. For example, you'll often hear them say what an item is worth "at auction," or "retail," or "for insurance purposes" (replacement value). Retail prices are different from wholesale prices. Often an auctioneer will talk about what she knows best: the auction market. A shop owner will usually talk about what he knows best: the retail price he'd place on the object in his shop. And though there are no hard and fast rules, an object's auction price can often be half its retail value; yet for other objects, an auction price could be higher than retail. As a rule, however, retail and insurance/replacement values are about the same.
Verbal approximations: The values given by the experts on ANTIQUES ROADSHOW are considered "verbal approximations of value." Technically, an "appraisal" is a legal document, generally for insurance purposes, written by a qualified expert and paid for by the owner of the item. An appraisal usually involves an extensive amount of research to establish authenticity, provenance, composition, method of construction, and other important attributes of a particular object.
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